The Heart Principle by Helen Hoang @HHoangWrites @BerkleyRomance ‏ @BerkleyPub

Posted August 31, 2021 by Anne - Books of My Heart in Book Review / 12 Comments

Review copy was received from NetGalley. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.


The Heart Principle by Helen Hoang @HHoangWrites @BerkleyRomance ‏ @BerkleyPubThe Heart Principle by Helen Hoang
Published by Berkley on August 31, 2021
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 320
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
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When violinist Anna Sun accidentally achieves career success with a viral YouTube video, she finds herself incapacitated and burned out from her attempts to replicate that moment. And when her longtime boyfriend announces he wants an open relationship before making a final commitment, a hurt and angry Anna decides that if he wants an open relationship, then she does, too. Translation: She's going to embark on a string of one-night stands. The more unacceptable the men, the better.

That’s where tattooed, motorcycle-riding Quan Diep comes in. Their first attempt at a one-night stand fails, as does their second, and their third, because being with Quan is more than sex—he accepts Anna on an unconditional level that she has just started to understand herself. However, when tragedy strikes Anna’s family she takes on a role that she is ill-suited for, until the burden of expectations threatens to destroy her. Anna and Quan have to fight for their chance at love, but to do that, they also have to fight for themselves.

I have really enjoyed the books by this author in the Kiss Quotient series.  I find I am emotionally absorbed with the character’s personal issues and growth.   People are going through things and they may not be able to tell you or understand themselves why some things are so difficult.

Anna is a high functioning autistic.  All her life, her sister and parents have pushed her and been angry with her if she has issues with things, for example, crowds or having her hair touched.  So she masks all her feelings, and does and says what she thinks they want to hear.  She also avoids them mostly, since acting is exhausting. I really hate how they treat her and make her feel, many times.

She has recently had a smashing success with a violin solo and somehow that makes it worse.   No one in her family understands or tries to understand.  She takes a leave from the Symphony and starts therapy.  There she discovers she might be autistic and reads about it. She tries to tell her family about it but it doesn’t go well.

Her boyfriend of several years, decides he wants to experience more women and have an open relationship before he makes a commitment. So Anna decides to date other people also. Yeah, he’s totally a tool and I would punch him if I could.

She meets Quan Diep who runs the clothing business with his cousin, Michael, who we met in The Kiss Quotient. For the first time, Anna experiences someone who listens to her and cares enough to  know the real person. I heart Quan from start to finish.  He is so kind and caring.  He really supports Anna in many ways as she grows and deals with some other changes in her life.  He has some of his own issues but thankfully Michael and Stella have his back.

Anna and Quan are such a great couple and I was happy to see them together. I learned about them as they learned about each other.   They may be a bit different than each other, but that gives them new things to learn and discuss, as they are curious about each other’s lives and hobbies.  This author never seems to fail in her storytelling about people and their issues and growth in a realistic and inspiring way which fill the heart.

About Helen Hoang

Helen Hoang is that shy person who never talks. Until she does. And the worst things fly out of her mouth. She read her first romance novel in eighth grade and has been addicted ever since. In 2016, she was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder in line with what was previously known as Asperger’s Syndrome. Her journey inspired THE KISS QUOTIENT. She currently lives in San Diego, California with her husband, two kids, and pet fish.

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Posted August 31, 2021 by Anne - Books of My Heart in Book Review / 12 Comments


12 responses to “The Heart Principle by Helen Hoang

  1. I usually try to wait to read reviews of a book I’m about to pick up, but I went ahead and read yours because I saw a negative reaction from another blog (two reviewers discussing it) and while I only got bits and pieces because I didn’t want to delve into their in-depth hash out before giving the book a chance myself. I’m so happy to see you enjoyed the story, Anne, because it gives me hope I will too. I’m just going to keep an open mind and try not to compare this installment to the previous ones. Wonderful review!

    Rachel recently posted: Review: Uncharted by Adriana Anders
  2. Jen

    Thanks for the review. After loving the first two books in this series, I opted not to read this one for a couple of reasons. First, my schedule was already overfull and I didn’t want to stress myself out with too many books and falling behind. But also, I was a bit leery of the content based on the marketing from Berkley. While I love complex, emotional stories (which this author excels at based on the first two books), it seemed like this one was going to be darker or have more triggers. Not sure now, but I contemplated on the book for a while before deciding not to read. Also, I thought it was not related to the first two books. So now I’m thinking maybe I’ll need to pick it up when I have time.